Interview With Viv Leacock 

By Ruth on March 3, 2017 in Interview, movie, television
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A few months ago, I had the opportunity to chat with the talented, funny, and very down-to-earth Viv Leacock (read my first interview with him here). He mentioned When We Rise during that first interview, but I only knew of it minimally back then. Since his episode is airing this evening (March 3rd), I was pleased to have the opportunity to get a few updates about this guy who has become one of the busiest and most sought-after actors in the business while still being kind, authentic, and magnanimous.

VL: Hi, Ruth! So cool to chat with you again! Thanks for your interest in my career!

RH: It hasn’t been that long since I talked with you, Viv, but you have some amazing works coming up. Let’s first talk about Dirk Gently. Why do you think the show resonated with the fans so much? 

Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency is a puzzle you need to solve! It’s all-consuming with layers and layers of details that you might not see at first glance. This show demands that you pay attention and rewards you for it with hilarious dialogue and off-the-wall characters! This show is based off the writings of Douglas Adams and as such is incredibly intricate. All from the mind of, Max Landis, so crazy twists and turns are guaranteed!

Dirk Gently has been picked up for a second season. What are your hopes for your character Gripps in season two? 

We’re all very excited about season 2!! I don’t know…Maybe for a look into his past. All of the characters that make up the show are so interesting, it’d be cool to see where they’re from. I actually really want people to see how strong Gripps is! I love the fact that he has super strength!

I recently interviewed one of your co-stars, Zak Santiago. Any behind-the-scenes stories you can share from filming with him? He thinks pretty highly of you, and I remember that you think pretty highly of him. Why do you think your “trio” on that show has such a great chemistry and such fun together

Zak is one of the coolest cats in the city! Zak and I go back about eighteen years and have always been cool with each other. He’s incredibly generous, loyal, thoughtful and sharp. He keeps us on our toes; man, you never know what he might say or do!

 Very shortly, we will see you in the mini-series When We Rise. You mentioned it in passing in our last interview. What can you tell us about your involvement in this series? Why do you think this mini-series is so important at this time in today’s society? What can you tell us specifically about your role? Any behind-the-scenes moments?

My involvement in When We Rise is something that I am very proud of. The LGBQT community should have an equal voice. Period! I’ll fight for anyone’s right to be treated fairly and with equality. As a black man in this world, I know what discrimination looks and feels like all too well.

My role is of a father that takes his young daughter to the White House to hand-deliver a very important letter to President Obama.

Behind the scenes, it was a labor of love for everyone involved. There was a charged atmosphere on set and you knew you were working on something so special.

You are also listed in the pilot of Let the Right One In. Is there anything you can tell us about this upcoming series? It only says it will be released in 2017. Any updates?

Let The Right One In is a TV pilot based off of the 2008 Swedish romantic horror of the same name. I wish I had more news at this point, but I know that the writer/creator, Jeff Davis owns the rights to the pilot and is shopping it around.

You are currently filming the next Hailey Dean mystery. I remember how much you loved working with Kellie Martin. What can we expect from you two this time? 

Kellie Martin is one of the coolest people I’ve ever worked with! We hit it off right away and bonded over our mutual love of the Lethal Weapon movie franchise, hahaha!

In this one we get a little more insight into Hailey’s past and deal with a shocking twist that sets up the third installment!

What do you like about working with the cast of Hailey Dean? What is the filming atmosphere like? Any other people that you share any special scenes with this time?

The cast of Hailey Dean 2, Kellie, myself, Giacomo {Baessato}, Matt{ew MacCaull}, Lucia {Walters}, and Peter {Bryant} are joined by guest stars, Michelle Harrison and Jim Thorburn on this one. I’ve known both, Michelle and Jim for a long time, so it was very cool to spend time together! It’s very much like a family on this set, and with our fearless leader Terry Ingram at the helm, it always goes smooth!! Terry is one of those directors that you dream of working with because he is both technically proficient and able to communicate exactly what he wants to the actor. I love working on these because they let Kellie and I ad lib and have so much fun!

Any other upcoming works you can mention? 

Besides Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency, I am really looking forward to filming season two of a comedy called, Loudermilk. The show centers around Sam Loudermilk played by Ron Livingston, who is an AA counselor with a very abrasive and harsh way of dealing with the addicts that come to him for guidance. I play Stevie, a slick-dressing alcoholic with plenty to say. The show also stars Will Sasso as Ben, Loudermilk’s AA sponsor. The show will air sometime soon I’m told.

Since you are raising children in this time of negativity and bad news, how do you keep your children grounded and away from negative influences in spite of your busy schedule? Do any of your kids seem to want to follow in your footsteps in terms of acting?

My wife, Divina, and I are lucky enough to have spent most of our lives together, from age thirteen until now. We are on the same page with how we treat each other and our children. We both believe that instilling a child with confidence will help them to deal with any unfortunate situations that might  happen. We know that it takes a village to raise kids, and we have surrounded ourselves with amazing family and friends and immersed the kids in our community. We tell our kids that life beyond the bubble that we live in is not always kind and sometimes dangerous. We have a very open dialogue about anything they want to discuss.

Our eldest child, Vienna, has picked up the mantle! She’s one of the leads on a PBS children’s cartoon called, Ready Jet Go! We are all so proud of her, and when she’s ready to take on parts for TV or film, I’ll be there with a huge grin on my face!! I know that all three of my kids would make great actors if that’s something they really want to do.

Totally off-the-wall question here, but I think you’ll appreciate it. When you leave this earth, what do you want written on your epitaph?

Hmmm….Good question!! I think I’d want it to say “I’ll be right back!”

You know me, I love to leave ’em laughing!

I honestly knew that Viv would appreciate that last question–I wouldn’t have thrown that to just anyone. But if you remember, he is a comedian at heart, and any time he has the chance to get a laugh, he will. On the other hand, if serious, heartfelt, and even gritty acting is necessary, Viv is always up for the challenge. He has been a working actor all this time, and last year was when he finally began to reap a few of the benefits of that labor, time, blood, sweat, and tears he invested into his dream profession. Some actors in this position may become cocky, counterfeit, and possibly even prosaic. They may stop seeking improvement and declare that they have “arrived.” Thankfully, we can all rest in the fact that Viv KNOWS that this is a lifelong process, and whether playing opposite an A-lister or grinding out his role in an indie film, he understands that the position in which he finds himself right now is not guaranteed. He is blessed to have the success in which he is reveling now, but tomorrow, it could be yanked from him with an unexpected force. Therefore, he is aware of the fact that it behooves him to enjoy the work he has now and continue to hone his craft–both of which he does with a jubilant vengeance! If you are so inclined, consider tuning into When We Rise this evening on ABC as I know this series is a passion project for all involved. Additionally, consider checking out Viv’s links below, and I would entreat my readers to watch out for all his upcoming works as his versatility is practically legendary. I can guarantee that he is one of those actors that is worth supporting as he is is consistently benevolent and humble as well as fiercely gifted!

FOLLOW VIV

Twitter
Instagram 
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IMDb: Viv LeacockFrequencyDirk Gently’s Holistic Detective AgencyWhen We Rise

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About the Author

RuthView all posts by Ruth

43-year-old single mother of an active 14-year-old girl
Born in Tacoma, WA; lives in Yelm, WA
Entertainment Writer
Available For Interviews and Reviews
Substitute Teacher

4 Comments

  1. This is kind of embarrassing, but I have no idea who Viv is. I don’t think I’ve seen anything that he’s in, but from his interview, he sounds like a fun-loving family man!

    • Author
      Ruth March 3, 2017 Reply

      Dena don’t be embarrassed. I didn’t know who he was a few months ago. If I have enlightened you a little about him, my purpose is accomplished.

  2. Sandra Beeman March 5, 2017 Reply

    I much enjoyed this review. Its heart warming to hear of an actor with such high morals and social goals. I respect the way the children are raised, as well. And, I love the humor!

    • Author
      Ruth March 5, 2017 Reply

      Sandra thank you–I fully agree and you just gotta love that humor!

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